As a new year began, I hoped that I would have less poop to deal with both literally and figuratively. However, reality quickly set in and I realized that with the addition of yet another fur family member, I would definitely have to deal with more poo in my life.
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Gus Gus was growing like crazy and had weighed in at almost 30 pounds at his first vet visit.
However the week after Christmas, Gus Gus wasn't feeling well.
His lethargy and loss of appetite prompted a frantic call to the vet. He was put on a bland diet. After a few days, Gus Gus had gained back his energy and appetite.
The term sick as a dog definitely fit Gus for those few days. I surmised that the possible culprit behind his stomach discomfort might be poop.
Clem, Sherman and Sadie have successfully trained Gus to find poop in the woods.
Gus now makes a beeline for any pile of disgusting deification he can find in the forest. He seems very adept at it already. It would be nice if I could have trained him to find something like truffles or treasure.
With the area wildlife sharing our trails, trying to avoid any and all poop is next to impossible. I have declared our trails as "poop free" zones, but so far no one has complied.
It also doesn't help matters that walking poo dispensaries, Kyle and Kennedy, are along for the trip.
My current solution to try to keep Gus from his poop detecting and digesting is a small red harness that he is quickly outgrowing.
The harness sometimes helps me get a handle on the situation. Although Gus does well off lead, the poop is too much of a temptation and often causes him to stray.
Gus appeared to be getting along with the other dogs, especially Clem. I said something to Clem about watching after his 'little brother" and realized that Sherman might think of Gus as more of his little bother.
I am sure the new year will bring new experiences for Gus and the rest of us alike. Here is hoping that we can keep the misadventures and poop eating to a minimum in the coming weeks. However, Gus and the rest of them seemed determined undermine my goal.
That's just the nature of things 'round here.
As if things weren't chaotic enough at the Applegate household, on Nov. 29 we welcomed a new fur family member. Gus Gus was 8 weeks old at the time and was quickly initiated into the holiday hat photo session.
He took the festive torture like a pro and even had the sad puppy eyes pose down.
Additionally Sadie, was not spared from the photographic persecution.
Lil' Bit could not contain his disdain.
"The Nature of Things" features the writings and photographs of Anna Applegate, who is a lifelong resident of Pinegrove Township, Venango County. She is a graduate of Cranberry High School and Clarion University. After a 15-year career in the local news industry, she made a change and now works at a steel finishing plant in Sandycreek Township. She is a avid lover of animals and nature, and a gifted photographer.